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artificially cooling the ocean ahead of a land-destined tropical cyclone

PROPERTY DAMAGE Insurance Claims

  • Wind Damage
  • Water Damage
  • Sinkhole Damage & Collapse
  • Hail Storm Damage
  • Tornado Damage
  • Fire Damage
  • Lightning Damage
  • Business Interruption Claims
  • HOA/Condo Association Claims
  • Insurance Bad Faith
  • Examination Under Oath
Engineer checking defect in construction site measuring correct dimention


  • Stucco Defects
  • Roofing Defects
  • Window & Door Defects
  • Foundation Settlement/concrete Cracking
  • Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing Defects (MEP)
  • Violation of Building Codes
  • Design Professional Liability
  • Warranty Claims
  • Unlicensed Contracting & Fraudulent Liens
  • Contractor & Design Professional Insurance

Lakeland Property Damage & Construction Defect Lawyer

The experienced professional you need for your residential or commercial property claim

Sunset over Lake Mirror Lakeland, Florida

If you suffered damage to your property and it wasn’t your fault, then there has to be a way to pay for your damages. The proper pathway might be through your insurance company if the damage was caused by a storm or other covered event, or it might be a claim against a contractor or design professional if you are the victim of defective construction. In either case, you can expect opposition to your claim that requires skillful handling from an experienced professional to guide your claim to a successful resolution.

The Ruel Law Firm was founded for precisely that purpose. Florida attorney Michael Ruel established this firm after more than 15 years defending insurance companies against first-party property insurance claims and defending the contractors, subcontractors and design professionals they insured in third-party construction defect claims. Michael knows how the claims process and building construction works, and he has extensive experience litigating cases in Florida state and federal courts. The Ruel Law Firm will work diligently to resolve your dispute efficiently and effectively but will always be ready to litigate your case in court if the matter can’t otherwise be resolved. For help throughout Central Florida from Tampa to Orlando and beyond, contact our experienced Lakeland property damage & construction defect lawyer today.

Here in Central Florida, we don’t have to wait around long before Mother Nature reminds us of the power and devastation a storm can wreak. Insurance is a must to recover from storm damage, but all too often the insurance companies decide your claim isn’t covered, or they dispute the amount of damage you incurred. The Ruel Law Firm takes the time to investigate the damage and determine your loss, read your insurance policy, and hold the insurance company to the terms of its policy and Florida law. Our office takes on all manner of property damage insurance claims in Central Florida, including:

  • Hurricanes
  • Wind Damage
  • Plumbing Pipe and Appliance Leaks
  • Water Intrusion Damage
  • Sinkholes and Ground Collapses
  • Hail
  • Tornadoes
  • Lightning
  • Fire

Our property damage insurance claims practice includes representing homeowners, HOAs, condo associations, and businesses with commercial property claims, including business interruption losses. We are with you at every step of the claims process, including examinations under oath, settlement negotiations, and litigation when necessary. Our office works to resolve good faith insurance coverage disputes and also takes insurance companies to task for bad faith or unlawful claims handling practices. The Ruel Law Firm is your source for practical advice and effective resolution of your property damage insurance claim in Lakeland and Central Florida.

From Tampa to Orlando, construction is booming in Central Florida. Too often contractors, subcontractors, materials suppliers and design professionals fail to do their jobs with the competence and diligence they require. Construction defects can devastate or destroy a home’s value, and they can be harmful to your health as well. Whether due to negligence or cutting costs at the expense of quality, contractors and others in the building process can be held liable for the costs to repair and compensation for any damages their faulty construction has created. Florida construction defect law has created a very strict process for property owners to follow to resolve their claims. Our construction defect legal team represents you in this process, ensuring your claim is filed timely and accurately. We represent homeowners in settlement negotiations as well as litigation when the claim process fails to end in a satisfactory resolution. Count on the Ruel Law Firm for incisive representation in any construction defect matter in Lakeland and Central Florida, including:

  • Stucco/Siding Defects
  • Roofing Defects
  • Defective Windows & Doors
  • Foundation/Concrete Settlement & Cracking
  • Mechanical/Electrical/Plumbing (MEP) Defects
  • Statutory Violation of Building Codes
  • Architect/Engineer Professional Liability – Design Defects
  • Warranty Claims
  • Unlicensed Contracting & Fraudulent Liens
  • Contractor & Design Professional Insurance Coverage

Attorney Michael Ruel is an experienced personal injury attorney who uses his knowledge and skills learned from representing business and commercial clients under their insurance policies against personal injury claims to negotiate or litigate claims to a successful conclusion. We’ll work to get you the maximum compensation for you and your family, including compensation for medical bills, loss of income, pain and suffering, and more. Our comprehensive Florida personal injury practice includes:

  • Premises Liability/Slip & Fall
  • Recreational Boating Accidents
  • Construction Site Injuries
  • Wrongful Death
  • Minors/Child Injuries

Michael Ruel has 14 years of experience in the complex, highly specialized and technical area of admiralty and maritime law. Specific federal laws govern claims that arise not just in the Gulf of Mexico or Atlantic waters but on the lakes and rivers of Central Florida as well. The Ruel Law Firm has the knowledge and experience necessary for your admiralty or maritime claim involving:

  • Vessel Repair/Damage
  • Personal Injury

If you are a homeowner or business owner in Lakeland or Central Florida, the Ruel Law Firm can help you with your property damage insurance claim, construction defect litigation, and many other legal needs. We offer a free initial consultation to learn about your needs and let you know how we might be able to help you. We operate under a variety of reasonable fee structures to meet your needs, including hourly rates and contingency fees in appropriate cases. Many of our areas of practice operate under a fee-shifting statute, where our fees get paid by the opposing party if we are successful on your behalf. Give us a call or schedule a consultation to share your legal needs and find out how we can help. Contact our experienced Lakeland property damage insurance claims & construction defect lawyer today.

Recent Results

As an insurance defense lawyer, Michael Ruel achieved outstanding success for his clients. At the Ruel Law Firm, Michael uses those same skills and drive to help homeowners with storm damage & construction defect claims.

Michael Ruel, 

Attorney at Law

Michael Ruel is the founder and principal attorney at the Ruel Law Firm

Michael’s objective is always to obtain the most favorable resolution of his client’s case quickly and efficiently, minimizing the costs of protracted litigation. Sometimes this means early settlement, while other times a winning resolution requires a courtroom battle. In either case, Michael’s experience and his proactive approach to client communication allow him to craft the right strategy for each case. He regularly tries jury and bench trials in federal and Florida state trial courts and also advocates for his clients in arbitration as required. Before embarking on his legal career, Michael served in the U.S. Air Force as a member of the 55th Special Operations. In addition to his military career… Read More